Friday, May 29, 2009

Figueroa Mountain Hillside

"Figueroa Mountains Hillside"
9"x 12" Oil on canvas covered panel
Just finished this one up that I had painted to work on bright sunlight. I had taken some reference photos from the Figueroa mountains in afternoon light. I had some great shots of the rocks and grasses catching the light so they've been the inspiration to paint a few of that area.

I'm not crazy about the photograph of this painting. I've just upgraded to a newer computer but using my old monitor and the colors seem to be slightly off in my monitor now. I'm finding it hard to get used to the new colors and wondering why they seem to be different....possibly the color profile from the computer??? I dunno.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Mustard Painting

"A Peaceful Afternoon"
8" X 10" Oil on masonite panel
Every year the mustard comes to California and blooms along the hillsides and in the valleys. I actually enjoy painting mustard and am still experimenting with how to paint it. It's always fun to paint mustard though so to me this little painting was worth the time to complete it. The painting is on gessoed masonite which is a nice texture to work with. I'm now applying 3 coats of gesso on masonite which seems to be working for me. I felt like 2 coats was allowing too much of the oil in the paint to soak up into the gesso so I've gone with 3 coats which seems to keep the paint from dragging off the brush in the later stages of the painting.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Carrizo Plain

Wanting to make good use of my reference photos taken up at the Carrizo Plain I decided to paint another scene from there. This one has more bushes and those tiny yellow flowers that were carpeting the hillsides. In the distance was the Temblor mountain range half covered in shadow by the passing clouds that day. A really nice scene of color and value changes to paint. "Carrizo Plain Springtime"
12" X 16"
Oil on Canvas Covered Panel

Monday, May 11, 2009

Santa Maria Sunset

"Santa Maria Sunset"
12" X 16" Oil on canvas covered panel

Alla Prima work is so fun when it goes right. I started this one this morning and finished it in about 3 hours. I've used the clouds like this before in another paiting so I tried it again here. Fro that point I just used my imagination to paint this one. When I finished up it reminded me of an area I've seen many times near the town of Santa Maria so that is where the title came from. They get great sunsets up there. These out of your head paintings are always fun and fast. A nice break from PA or working from a reference photo.
Here are some detail photos.....

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Caliente Mountains

There are 2 mountain ranges that border the Carrizo Plain, the Temblor Range and the Caliente Range. This scene is looking towards the Caliente mountain range to the west of the Plain. The area is rugged and breathtaking. I was so fortunate to get there this Spring while the plants were still blooming. Soon the heat will come to the Plain but it goes with the territory.

"Caliente Mountains Afternoon"

8" X 10" Oil on canvas covered panel

A detail of the painting...

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Carrizo Plain...again

"On The Carrizo Plain"

12" x 16" Oil on canvas covered panel

I decided to do yet another painting of the Carrizo Plain. I'm sure I will do many more in time so bear with me. This scene was painted simply because I love painting trails. I took a lot of photos out there where I saw trails leading off into the wilds. This particular one led to the foothills of the Elkhorn hills near the south entrance to the Plain.
The other thing that caught my eye was the immence distance there is across the Plain and the effects that causes on the atmosphere in the scene. There is an almost hazy effect on the distant mountains. I love how the details of these mountains were soflty blurred simply because of this hazy effect from nature. Very cool to see and paint. Below is a detail of the painting....

Here is the reference photo that I worked from. As you can see I cropped the area that I wanted and worked from that. This ref photo actually has many paintable scenes in just have to spot them and grab your brushes.
See that cloud? Do you realize that cloud runs across the valley which means it was at least 5 miles long!

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Carrizo Bloom

I took some good reference photos on my recent journey to the Carrizo Plain. The Carrizo Plain is located west of the town of Taft which is west of Bakersfield. The San Andreas fault runs the length of the eastern side of the Plain and this is one of the best places along the fault to view it since there is very little erosion up there. They get very little rainfall which means erosion damage is almost nil along the fault.

This view is part of the Elkhorn hills in the foreground and in the distance you can see the Temblor mountain range. It's beautiful up on the Plain and clouds so low you feel you are almost on the same level as they glide by.

"Carrizo Plain in Spring"

12" x 16"